October 07, 2003

letter to the used car salesman

i am reprinting in honor of my friend, zack, who is just getting into the exciting world of used car peddling.
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Dear Used Car Salesmen of the World,

Having recently shopped for a used car I thought I would point out an area that the vast majority of you could stand to improve in: TRY NOT TO BE THE MOST DISGUSTING SCUMBAGS THE WORLD HAS EVER KNOWN!

Let me help you out by sharing some examples of my interactions with salesmen. These are actual situations and quotes.

1. You may notice that I call you by your name repeatedly as we talk. This is not because you have won my trust, this is because I am making fun of how you are using my name constantly in an attempt to sound friendly. You would try other methods of sounding friendly but you can't think of any. This is because you have never liked, or been liked by, anyone.

2. When you say, "So give me a price", I will say, "That is funny. I came here because you were selling the car. Somehow in my twisted logic I thought that meant you would know the price". No matter how hard you press, "Tell me what price you need to see, Josh", I will continue to say, "I will need to see your best price, Steve."

3. There is no mystery to why I am looking for a used car. Please don't pretend this is hard to understand. I explained this to a sales manager just last week. "'Josh, why do you want to buy a used CR-V when there are all these new ones on the lot!' 'Well mike [leaning in close and said in a conspiratorial whisper] it just that...the used cars [looking around to make sure no one overheard, Mike leaning in closer]...well, the used ones...They are CHEAPER!'"

4. Your attempts at pressuring me may make me finally say something like I said to one young idiotic salesman, "You may notice that when you say "Well, I guess you are not serious about buying" I wince. I am not wincing because I feel badly about my newly discovered lack of seriousness. I am wincing because I am embarrassed for you and your awkward attempts at pressuring me. You obviously deal with a lot of foolish and easily intimidated people. That is lucky for you, since those are the only kind of people you are qualified to deal with. Goodbye."

I could go on, but I want to help you, not just point out all the reasons you should throw-up everytime you see yourself in the mirror (Wait, do you actually have a reflection?). So, a couple of suggestions.

1. Every morning repeat 15 times. "I will try not to be a sociopath".

2. Watch people who aren't used car salesmen. See how people sometimes like them? Try to be like those people.

3. Strictly observe a national Used Car Salesman Day of Penance. On the last Saturday of each month you should engage in an appropriate activity from sunup to sundown, such as repeatedly poking yourself in the eye, punching yourself in the groin, or hitting your thumb with a hammer (bonus penance for combining all three).

Yours truly,
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heh. josh is the amish robot, about 4 miles away from me, according to the GEOURL thingy. this reprint is covered by a creative commons license

Posted by travis at October 7, 2003 09:11 AM | TrackBack

This is why you deal with owners directly. I find that you can get the true market value, and most of the time less, in the car that you want that way. Both parties are looking out for their best interest, but the owner of said automobile most likely realizes that if he/she does not drop the price the car will never sell. Not to mention they probably won't say your name too much because they don't really care to know it.

Posted by: Al at October 8, 2003 12:27 PM